VH1 Honors Def Jam’s 25th Anniversary in Brooklyn [With Pictures]

VH1’s Hip Hop Honors did things a bit differently than in years past for their sixth annual show, which went down last night (September 23) in Brooklyn. Rather than paying homage to some of hip hop’s greatest acts, as has been done in years past, the show recognized the long and influential history of one of music’s most important labels, Def Jam.

Many current and former artists on the label’s roster, as well as others simply wishing to show love, were on hand for the show which was held at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. The night kicked off with Eminem and Black Thought channeling LL Cool J’s “Rock the Bells.” Next, two of the greatest groups of all time were honored, as Public Enemy performed “Rebel Without a Pause” with help from a few friends, and Wale, KRS-One, and Travis McCoy rocked to Beastie Boys hit “No Sleep till Brooklyn.”

Neither LL nor the Beastie Boys were in the house to witness the tributes, but each was shown in previously recorded video segments that recalled Def Jam related stories and aired in between performances. Founders Rick Rubin and Russell Simmons, former executive Lyor Cohen, and Kevin Liles—all of whom were in attendance—as well as many others including LA Reid, Bill Adler and Slick Rick, also shared memories in clips.

The night was filled with Def Jam hits and reunions, from Ja Rule and Ashanti collaborating on “Down 4 U” and “Always on Time,” to Onyx’s “Slam,” and Method Man and Mary J. Blige starting “You’re All I Need,” before hugging and mysteriously walking off stage before Mary did her verse. Rick Ross performed his hit “Hustlin’,” while DMX did the same with “Party Up,” and Warren G and Trey Songz teamed up for a memorable rendition of “Regulate.”

After Ludacris and Scarface came out together and got the crowd hype to “Guess Who’s Back” and “Southern Hospitality,” respectively, DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Roots brought the evening home with a Def Jam medley. Assisted by Kid Rock, EPMD, Fabolous, Foxy Brown, Ghostface,  Chrisette Michelle and Wale, the night came to a close with versions of “I’ll Be,” “Back Like That,” and “Touch the Sky,” among others.

The tribute will air for all to see at 9 p.m. on October 13. -Adam Fleishcer

Photos courtesy of Jesse Gissen. Click on image to enlarge

  • http://www.myspace.com/emcdlthemusicprofile EmCDL

    Ok WTF is up with Foxy Brown’s face??? Sounds like it was a good show nonetheless.

    J7M!

    • Larry Brite

      WORD! lol =(

  • http://Pierzy11@gmail.com Pierzy

    Foxy, what happened? She looks like a Japanese anime character. Damn.

  • Ayre

    Foxy looks like a Muppet

  • http://WWW.MAJORMUVS.COM *BLOCK*

    BLOCK!!!!!!!!!!!

    ITS THERE THANG…BUT I AINT WIT THE NERD GLASSES…FOXY DO LOOK LIKE A RA-TARD (THE HANGOVER) WHO IS THAT IN THE PIC ABOVE LUDA…I SEE OL BOY IN THE BACKGROUND…CANT THINK OF HIS NAME FOR ISH THOUGH

    • SOUTHSIDE A-TOWN

      ^^i believe thats Kevin Liles.

      damn, aint seen Free in forever.

    • P. Harris

      That’s Mad Skillz behind Kevin Liles in the pic…

      • http://WWW.MAJORMUVS.COM *BLOCK*

        BLOCK!!!!!!!!!!

        YEA MAD SKILLZ…COULDN’T THINK OF HIS NAME FOR NOTHING…I DIDN’T LISTEN TO HIM A WHOLE LOT BUT I KNEW THE FACE..AND YEA OL KEVIN LILES…IT ALMOST LOOKED LIKE RUSSEL WIT A NEW LOOK OR SOMETHING

    • P. Harris

      That’s Mad Skillz in the background…

  • sb

    damn its a shame that LL and the Beastie Boyz weren’t there..They were a huge part of the def jam history. They put def jam on the map.i hope tla rock was there..he has the very first record on def jam “it’s yours”.

  • P. Harris

    Foxy??? Dayum… LOL…

    SMH…

    Ill Na Na

  • Bobo D

    Is Foxy cock-eyed? (Pun intended)

  • GIFT

    Sounds like a helluva night, but wtf is up w/luda’s glasses. Foxy face was fucked up, but the dress looked good on her lmao!!!!

  • Worley

    Glad to see X lookin’ healthy with a new fine b*tch. His ex wife looks like an alien.

    @SOUTHSIDE A-TOWN: You know Ghost gonna put that Boom Boom Mancini on Free (if he didn’t already). Ol’ girl got a fatteeeeee.

  • abdulnasir

    WTF happened to Foxy? Every1 seems grwon up, but home girl!

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  • BeerGangsta

    Thank you Def Jam for 25 years of Music. Def Jam started Rap Music. If it was not for Def Jam. Ya’ll would be listen to all that R&B shit. Back then it was Rolling with Rush. They brought the best Artist out from all Coasts. No one can do it better.

  • won1

    luda & jay-z seem persistent in channeling up Urkel for some reason

  • ChiTown

    why does it seem like almost everybody is cock eyed in these damn pictures or is it just me lol

    • $ykotic/Don McCaine

      Word!!!

      Why the F*** is everybody cock-eyed in these flicks???

      Pass me some of that kush! HA!

      NO ONE EVER SPEAKS ABOUT CHUCK D BEING A G.O.A.T.

      p.s. When they do tributes like this(Def Jam), it means they ain’t gonna be around much longer. Peep game.

      • http://Pierzy11@gmail.com Pierzy

        For political/activism rhymes, Chuck D is my #1 pick. Even over The Blastmaster.

  • ChiTown

    oh and btw it looks like Foxy Brown done lost a fight with the eye doctor…I told that bitch to look straight in the visual Field Machine but bitch aint listen…poor lil tink tink

  • DV8

    Yo WTF happened to Foxy’s face? If thats just make-up she should fire her make up person. That shit looks bugged out.

    Any way I miss DefJam. It hasnt been the same since Lyor and Kevin left.

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  • http://xxlmag.com THE NOTORIOUS C.O.R.E.Y

    MUFUCKAS NEED TO QUIT HATIN!!! FOXY LOOKS GOOD!!!!!!

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